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Canaries to sue tabloid newspaper

PUBLISHED: 10:00 02 February 2010 | UPDATED: 07:52 02 July 2010

Sam Emanuel

Norwich City Football Club has issued legal proceedings in the High Court against a tabloid newspaper which claimed the club would soon go into administration if it could not find major new investors.

Norwich City Football Club has issued legal proceedings in the High Court against a tabloid newspaper which claimed the club would soon go into administration if it could not find major new investors.

The club had previously demanded a full apology from the News of the World in wording to be agreed, which they wanted put in at least as prominent a position as the claim had been, and they wanted it published in the next edition of the News of the World and on its website.

The club also demanded payment of a “substantial sum” in damages, payment of all costs incurred to date and an undertaking not to republish the article or repeat its allegations.

But their demands were not met, and a statement published on the Canaries' website yesterday said: “Norwich City Football Club PLC have today issued proceedings in the High Court against the publishers of the News of the World, following the article printed in the NOTW on January 24, 2010.

“The News of the World failed to comply with the terms of the letter sent by our solicitors of the same date, and accordingly Leathes Prior have issued on our behalf legal proceedings for libel.”

The offending article had been published on January 24 this year, and said that the Canaries were the latest club teetering on the brink of financial meltdown and that financial experts Ernst Young and KPMG had been called in as potential administrators.

But club chairman Alan Bowkett dismissed the claims and said: “In all my years in working in corporate finance I have never read such tosh and complete fabrication. The News of the World will be hearing from our lawyers and we look forward to claiming substantial damages.”

Chief executive David McNally also issued a statement calling the article “completely untrue”, and added: “As far as the club is concerned we consider the story is defamatory and accordingly we have placed the matter in the hands of our solicitors and will be pursuing for damages.”

A spokesman for the News of the World declined to comment at the time.

Have you got a football-related story for the Evening News? Call sports reporter Michael Bailey on 01603 772318 or email michael.bailey@archant.co.uk.

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